Why new Coast hospital is less ready than it looks

Commissioning of the $1.8bn Sunshine Coast University Hospital has started with the final staff recruitments also under way ahead of a planned April, 2017, opening.
Commissioning of the $1.8bn Sunshine Coast University Hospital has started with the final staff recruitments also under way ahead of a planned April, 2017, opening. Warren Lynam

SUNSHINE Coast University Hospital is on track for opening next April with operational commissioning now under way.

The hospital would open with 450 beds of its built capacity of 738 beds with the layout and design meant to accommodate further growth over time.

Kev Hegarty, the Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service chief executive, said the process would shift the SCUH from a physical building to a working hospital.

The new hospital will be home to 3000 of the region's public health staff who will total 6580 when the facility opens.

An additional 1000 medical and support workers are in the process of being employed or have been in recent months.

"While the physical building of SCUH may look complete from an outsider's perspective, what needs to happen behind the scenes to make a hospital ready for patients is highly complex and calls on expertise from across our clinical and administrative staff,'' he said. 

"Staff are checking that every single piece of new equipment, fittings and work fixtures are working in the way they should be to serve patients.

"There are over 200 IT systems alone to validate."

Mr Hegarty said physical run-throughs were being done of scenarios ranging from everyday situations such as labour and childbirth, to emergency situations with multiple trauma patients.

"These are taking place not just with our own staff, but with external agencies such as the emergency services, to ensure we are prepared as we possibly can be,'' he said. 

Stocking a brand new $1.8 billion facility which will become the region's flagship hospital is also a complex logistical exercise.

"We are ensuring we have the right supplies, in the right volume, in the right places, ready for when patients need them,'' Mr Hegarty said.

"This ranges from specialist medical consumables to cleaning supplies. There are over 250 equipment consumable locations to fill throughout the hospital."

Training of existing and new staff is essential for them to understand the hospital's various functions and procedures.

More than 4000 training sessions to fully induct staff have either been scheduled or completed to ensure the hospital opens its doors ready for patients.

Recruitment of the SCUH's medical workforce is almost complete with the state-of-the-art hospital and the region's location proving magnets for health professionals across Australia. 

The hospital was swamped with thousands of applications for administration roles, far more than needed.

A series of assessment centres last week sought to ensure the most suitable people were appointed for the initial positions required.

Mr Hegarty said those who applied but had been unsuccessful in the first round may have the opportunity for a position at SCUH as the services at the facility continue to grow over the next few years.

Recruitment this week would focus on nursing and operational staff.

"We received a much higher number of applications than we have roles for, so assessment centres have been established in order to identify candidates suitable for appointment,'' he said.  

"Experienced clinical staff from Sunshine Coast Hospital and Health Service are helping our HR team to assess candidates.

"Their expertise is invaluable in ensuring new recruits have a good cultural and clinical fit with the existing team. They are also busy running existing patient services, so this means that recruitment is not a quick process.

"We have already secured two thirds of the additional staff required for the opening of SCUH, so are on track given that the bulk of these staff will not be required to start until February 2017."


Topics:  general-seniors-news kev hegarty medical opening date public health staff recruitment sunshine coast university hospital

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Who was Warriena Wright?

Gable Tostee (right)  logged back on to Tinder just days after Rrie Wright's death.

Wright was more than just the girl who fell from a balcony

Neumann vows to back JBS workers

The ongoing dispute between JBS Dinmore and workers continues.

Federal MP to meet with company's management

Plans to tackle two of Qld's biggest traffic bottlenecks

More than 148,000 vehicles travel through one section each day

Local Partners

Police defend Riverlink traffic ticket

Inspector Keith McDonald says police have a responsibility to crack down on car park traffic offences.

Barry Gibb is coming to Bluesfest 2017

FANS: Barry Gibb talks to a fan next to a cardboard cutout of his young self.

Aged 70, Gibb has re-launched his solo music career with a new album

Tim Finn headlining at Airlie Beach Music Festival

Music veteran Tim Finn from New Zealand will headline the Airlie Beach Music Festival.

Tim Finn: "It's the kind of festival that artists love"

CMC organisers: No more pre-sale tickets will be sold

US country music group The Dixie Chicks. Supplied by Chugg Entertainment.

UPDATE: Plenty of people unhappy with process

Selma Blair blames flight outburst on 'psychotic blackout'

Selma Blair

"I am someone who should never drink, and I rarely do"

Bob Dylan acknowledges Nobel Prize win

Bob Dylan has finally acknowledged his Nobel Prize win

WATCH: Trailer for Jackman's final Wolverine film released

First trailer for the last Wolverine film with Hugh Jackman.

Thrilling trailer promises a dark, dystopian finale for Wolverine

CCTV footage surfaces of Kim Kardashian West's robbers

The blurry footage shows three men on bikes and two on foot

Cathriona White's mother claims to have Jim Carrey's results

Jim Carrey and late ex-girlfriend Cathriona White

SHE claims Carrey exposed White to herpes, chlamydia, Hepatitis A

The Koi Boys are back with more covers and original songs

Former Voice contestants The Koi Boys have signed with Universal Music.

THE Voice favourites release their debut album today.

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals

Cherrabah's mega resort plans axed

PLANS for a massive development at Cherrabah have been scrapped.

What our mayor thinks of the new draft SEQPlan

The plan to use the innovative technology as part of the new Maroochydore CBD was cemented on site today when Mayor Mark Jamieson and Envac Asia Region president Chun Yong Ha formally signed the contract for the $20 million underground waste collection system.

New plan accommodates Sunshine Coast Council's vision for growth.

Dusit Thani finance crisis 'just a small hiccup'

ON TRACK: Springfield Land Chairman, Maha Sinnathamby, Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, Developer Richard Turner and Springfield Land Deputy Chairman, Bob Sharpless, at the recent resort sod turning ceremony.

Property developer says project remains firmly on track

Heavyweight enters real estate market

Des Besanko principal and director of Raine and Horne Springfield.

Major rebranding which has seen two big name brands merge

SEQ is the 'greatest market': property guru John McGrath

SPEAKER: John McGrath of McGrath Estate Agents is today's guest speaker at the Better Business Breakfast.

SEQ is the "greatest" real estate market, says property guru.